The Catholic intellectual tradition is woven out of two thousand years of living faith and reflection. In the Middle Ages it gave rise to thriving university centres in such places as Paris, Oxford, and Bologna. These universities operated under a papal charter, and functioned with a remarkable degree of independence in their philosophical and theological explorations, and in the teaching of all the arts and sciences of the day.
Amongst the resources these early universities brought to the pursuit of wisdom were the many and rich traditions stemming from the early Church Fathers and the Monastic communities, along with the newly discovered Greek Philosophy and the contributions of learned Jewish and Islamic commentators.
A long history of commitment to truth, in a spirit of freedom and service, animates Australian Catholic University today. It prizes such key values as:
- following the way of Christ and commitment to Christian values
- participating in the community and mission of the Church
- a continuing dialogue between faith and reason - represented, for example, by the dialogue between philosophy and science
- respect for truth in all its forms and collaboration in seeking it through all the disciplines;
- promotion of the common good, and the dignity of the human person
- collaboration of all our staff and students, whatever their beliefs, in the interests of a more decent and humane society
- the promotion of teaching and research in ways that most serve the mission of the University
- respect for academic freedom.
(Source: Professor Anthony J. Kelly, CSsR Professor of Theology)